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That all makes sense and thanks for your input as well. I was not fully aware that you too had mucho GM experience so expect more question as time goes by please..
I have always theorized that: and mind you I'm making this up.. that Fisher pumped them out and Chevy split them up for the exact logistical reasons you listed above.. what is bugging me right this moment is how they can end up out the door in sequential order.. also: how can a bank at the beginning of the Chevy line help with breakdowns or tie ups...? once your on the locked line and the car goes ugly there isn't going to be a lot of help from a holding bay back at the beginning?
If the meaning of the bank is to allow the logistics guy to choose easy and hard cars in a smooth pattern then thats fine but would surely scramble the VIN's
Could the mistake or misperception be that the cars were not VIN'ed at the beginning of the bank but were in fact VIN'ed just as they left the bank to the locked line?
Why, if they were so in tune with logic wouldn't they have had Fisher do the logistical sorting right when they layed down the rockers?..We are talking about a line that made only one kind of car every day all day.. awesome and impressive but like any well oiled machine... easy going once all the tricks are know.. one would imagine
tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)
i think johnz and the crg have it nailed anything else is just as john stated.....
people not willing to acccept the facts
(Edit error Hit Edit instead of quote-Festival)This message has been edited. Last edited by: festival,
I wonder why the trim tags in 1967 were painted white? Anyone know??
[QUOTE]Originally posted by tnpace:
i think johnz and the crg have it nailed anything else is just as john stated.....
people not willing to acccept the facts
"VIN Scramble" at the staging lanes (body bank) is the CRG position. They are on record in support of it.
Therefore there is no way to confirm which car made it to the exit door first.
Nothing about the VIN# = confirmed IPC.
Only the TT confirms IPC.
Your Body number on your tag is later than one other known car and lacks the production trigger fleet code that the earlier car has on its TT.
Therefore absent Chevrolet provided information such as invoicing-the evidence is that the only way to have any verifibility as to a "first" is on the TT.
Tyler If you have the first Pace car built how can you tell using the accepted CRG position of "VIN Scrambling"?
Why dont you guys just make up two registries, one sorted by Fisher Body number, and the other by the Chevrolet Vehicle Identification number and call it good. Their problem solved
Oh pooo what do we do when someone comes up with confirmation on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway #1 decaled festival car. Heck it wouldn't be an official pace car if IMS didn't throw the party, Chevrolet didn't provide the camaro, and Fisher Body didn't build the tub. Crap now we have three # 1's. Ooops forgot about the actual two or three pace cars. Which one has the lowest body # and whick one has the lowest VIN #.....someone needs to get to work on that
At the time I worked in the Oakland plant, from 1960-63, we produced Chevrolet sedans and Corvair models. I have no idea what transpired in 1967 production methods. My earlier comments, which some jumped all over, were based on my knowledge of Fisher/Chevrolet procedures at the Oakland plant in 1960 only. I can state, with a certainty, All VIN's were fixed to the bodies on the Fisher Body side at the time they entered the paint department from the body shop.
Somewhere prior to the paint department, primer was brushed on the firewall before the VIN was affixed to the body. This had to be done, of course, to prevent rust from forming under the VIN tag. The body shop, in 1960, had to spot weld studs, (looking similar to nail heads), to the body for trim pieces to be attached. There were no adhesive backed trim then. Therefore, they HAD to have the VINs on the car IN the body shop to know whether or not to attach studs..
GM plants did not ALL operate in the same way. Nor did they follow the same procedures in all plants. Some may have been similar in how they produced products, but not all. All GM plants, and probably to this day still, competed for product build. Some to the point of keeping their way of building a product secret from the others. Each GM division had a great deal of say over which plant built their product. Each tried to outdo the other.
As for someone else stating hourly workers not knowing how scheduling affects what they do. That is plainly absurd. Many salaried employees hadn't the slightest idea of what it took to actually build a car. Many of their procedures wouldn't work, and had to be revised because the assembly methods laid out on paper were not feasible. Just because it's on paper, does not guarantee it is possible. Especially by someone who may be highly educated, but ignorant of assembly construction methods. Having been both hourly, and salaried supervisor, I ran in to this all the time.
For the VIN sequences, in my opinion, it matters not to any production supervisor what sequence the cars are in. Nor did it to upper management, to my knowledge. You could shuffle them up like a deck of cards, it didn't matter. Keeping them in sequence, or making sure the first sequence VIN exits the plant first, had no priority to anyone I was aware of when I was an active worker. Whether it be management, or hourly. Sequence only came into play as to making sure the materials required were there when each vehicle requiring them arrived in each department. In the 60's there was plenty of material in all plants. A long lead time was possible. Today, it is the 'just-in-time' method. Done to eliminate huge plants, and eliminate waste. I know the Fremont plant had a huge amount of wasted, costly space. As they went to the 'just-in-time' material method shortly after opening. It cost a lot of money to heat, cool, and maintain unnecessary building space.
Cheers to ya Tom This message has been edited. Last edited by: <IPC 93>,
When I said in my earlier thread that I side with the CRG group, I was referring to Rich Fields, the CRG coordinator, who stated and I quote "that the cars came off the assembly line in VIN# order. There can be no rational disagreement, they did period". Also, when I said I agree with John Z, which unbeknownst to me, is actually John Hinckley, who wrote an extensive 21-page camaro assembly process that was printed on the CRG site, which I found very fascinating and very informative, agrees that the VIN# was proof of process. He was also the one that you were quoted as saying was "the source", until the questions that you asked him didn't come back supporting your position. So when I say I agree with the CRG group, I guess I mean Rich Fields, the CRG coordinator, and John Hinckley. These 2 guys obviously know what they're talking about, and to say that the plant manager didn't know process in 1967, is total bologna. Cars were just their product, and that's the way they made their living. And to say they didn't know what transpired in their surroundings and to stay employed with GM from 1964-1985 is obsurd. They may not have recalled each special run of cars, but it didn't matter to them, process is process.
As I said in my first thread, I have been in automotive manufacturing for 18 years, and I have toured many plants: subassembly plants and vehicle assembly plants, and I have yet to see one that did not take subcomponents to make a car. They tracked these subcomponents with the Vehicle Identification Number. This cannot be denied.
I will also have to state that this very thread is why I don't contribute more to this site. When you have other people from other environments that make contributions to it, it seems like everyone tries to discredit them immediately such as Rich Fields and John Hinckley. I didn't purchase my car because it happened to be the lowest VIN#, the 1st Indy Pace Car, or any other reason than I just liked the car. I liked it so much, I have owned approximately 5 other 1967 Indy Pace Cars, and well over 10-15 1969 Indy Pace Cars. I'm afraid you will have to continue this debate without any further input from me. I have my facts, and I'm satisfied that my theory is correct. However, if one day another car appears, and it has a lower VIN#, which I highly anticipate would and could happen, I will gladly congratulate them on having the 1st Indy Pace Car produced, but it still will not take out any of the pleasure that I have in owning this car. If it makes you sleep better at night believing in your theory, than that's fine.
Regards, Tyler Collins.
Hot!! simply Hot!!
Opinions are like A-holes, everybody has one, so here’s my opinion. To date Tyler’s VIN # is the lowest # car known, yes??? We all agree that one line may roll a little faster than the next. So with this said, did Tyler's car exit the gate first? Who knows and who really cares. What difference does it really make? He owns the lowest VIN, so in my book it marks it the first car by sequence #. End of story. If it were your car, you take Mr. Collins stance as well. The real question of concern should be what # did the Indy Team assign it??? Guys we need to all play nice.
LOL...Let me remind you guys that you are talking about replicas..not actual Pace Cars...Naner Naner...
get in line!
Bill @ Camaroipc.com (remove the spaces)
I'm the first guy in this spirited debate to admit I have no facts... I admit I'm the guy that is most interested in figuring this out.. I really want to know..and I have my own theories and call them just that
How and why all the guys from the CRG have the balls to keep saying fact this and fact that when they too have NO FACTS is the reason this whole thread is sour..
Hows about instead of taking sides with one group or another..someone steps up and hits me with some facts..
I'm ready, I'm willing and I'm able to accept facts..
pictures will do, documents will do, invoice numbers in sequence with VIN's will do.. Heresay won't do. At least not for me
Telling all the minions the way it is and then not proving your assertions you guys can save that for the suckers...
tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)
All this dancing around about who has the first 67 IPC makes me wonder, who has the last one built? It is always the closing performance that brings the largest crowds
Yes, but what if the actual Pace Car is really #90 because they kept it off the track to protect it from possible damage and #92 was used only because it was expendable since it was really the back up car
LOL..I don't care. I consider the actual Pace car the one that paced the race. 91868A..not B
#92 is the real deal and got it done there is no dispute about that at all.
Back to the topic "First 1967 Indy Pace Car"
You got No Trim Tag you have no pace car.
Again there is an earlier body number with a fleet code.
We are looking to establish based upon what we can determine what was the first pace car.
A detailed review of the IPC registry has the VIN's all out of sequence.
The body numbers line up.
I am asking again lets try to get it right and put down the idology, Kurt and the CRG are cleary on record as supporting either the "VIN Scramble" or the "Sequence adjustment" for the VIN# assignment.
A review of our registry spports this reasoning.
It does not however support a true sequential build by VIN#.
Kurt S States
"Because the staging lanes scramble the VIN order a little"
John Z States:
"The VIN was assigned and affixed at the beginning of the schedule bank; other than minor sequence adjustments made in the schedule bank to equalize subsequent line balance, cars went through the Chevrolet assembly system in VIN sequence".
Now Using the CRG's own way of interpertation concerning production processes can anyone rationally give me a way that Tyler's claims can be proven?
BTW... would somebody here quit dodging my questions and repeating back what amounts to talkin' points.....
No, it's not. The reason this thread is sour is that there are several folks here who simply refuse to accept facts, and prefer to just argue about anything that doesn't fit the theories they espouse, in spite of the fact that they know absolutely nothing about how the plant operated, and refuse to learn about it from people who do.
You continue to refer to this discussion as some sort of "contest" between you and CRG, and that's not so; CRG has served the Camaro hobby for fifteen years by gathering objective data and facts and sharing that knowledge openly with restorers and enthusiasts. If there's a "contest", it's of your own making; as long as you allow yourselves to be led around by the nose by a few folks who are driven only by the need to argue, you close off any avenues to objective discussion and learning.
I'll address some of the issues and questions posted since yesterday:
I started on the line as an hourly assembler and repairman, and worked my way up the ladder as a Foreman, General Foreman, Superintendent, General Superintendent, Production Manager, and Plant Manager, and Director of Manufacturing Engineering for the whole corporation; I didn't get there by not knowing how cars were built.
The cars that are the focus here (Pace Cars) were no different than every other car coming down the line in terms of how they were built, in spite of the view by some folks that Pace Cars were somehow some special, exalted custom product that was built in the Black Forest by elves with magic fingers. In the plant, they were just cars - no more, no less, that used the same production process as any of the other 912 cars built every day.
Scheduling needs were completely different between the Fisher and Chevrolet sides of the plant. On the Fisher side, in the Body Shop, convertibles were a big deal - they required many extra parts, special tooling, dedicated welding and fixturing, and an enormous amount of added manual labor to build. In the Fisher Trim Shop, it was the same story - the off-line subassembly of the top frame, skin, and hydraulics took up a lot of floorspace and manpower, and the on-line installation, fitting, and finishing of the convertible top was extremely labor-intensive, requiring a lot of dedicated convertible-only manpower.
On the Chevrolet side, a convertible meant absolutely nothing, as it had no impact whatsoever on Chevrolet assembly operations; it was exactly the same as a coupe, except for four bolts for the X-brace. Convertibles had no affect at all on Chevrolet scheduling or manpower.
What mattered to Chevrolet was things like air conditioning, Rally Sport front ends, and consoles, all of which generated additional option-only tooling and manpower; that's why there was a schedule bank at the point where the body was received from Fisher and had the VIN assigned, so those units with labor-intensive Chevrolet options could be released into the final assembly system from the schedule bank spaced into regular production so line balance could be maintained.
The overall daily production schedule on the Fisher side was dictated by Chevrolet, and within that schedule, Fisher scheduled the bodies in order to maintain line balance for their own labor-intensive operations. Chevrolet knew exactly how many bodies they'd get every day, and what options those bodies would have; the receiving schedule bank allowed them to sort the incoming bodies for release that met Chevrolet's line balance requirements.
The ONLY person at Chevrolet who EVER looked at the cowl tag was the clerk at the entrance to the receiving schedule bank; he only looked at the body number, which was the computer link back to the dealer order that specified the exact options ordered on that car. That computer link generated the files that produced the Body Broadcast Copy and the Chassis Broadcast Copy that were teleprinted throughout the Chevrolet side of the plant when the body was released from the schedule bank into the Chevrolet assembly system; at that point the body was "locked" in sequence all the way to Roll-Test at the end of the line. Nobody at Chevrolet ever looked at the cowl tag again - all that mattered on the Chevrolet side was the Broadcast Copies.
Depending on how full the schedule bank was and how many high-option units were in their lines vs. how many regular units were in their lines, there could be as much as a 72-unit difference in VIN sequence from one unit to the next as a body progressed through the Chevrolet final assembly system, but that wasn't the norm. The clerk who released the bodies from the schedule bank had rules to follow in order to maintain line balance - things like never run two A/C cars in a row, never run two Rally Sports in a row, never run three console jobs in a row, etc., and that's how it was done. Releasing too many high-option labor-intensive units in a row or too close together over-cycled too many line operations and resulted in chaos, just like over-scheduling convertibles did on the Fisher side. Most things that were key scheduling criteria at Fisher meant nothing to Chevrolet, and vice versa; things like A/C, Rally Sport, and consoles meant next to nothing to Fisher.
There's a difference between "banks" between departments and the "schedule bank" where Chevrolet received the bodies from Fisher.
"Banks" between departments (like between the Body Shop and the Paint Shop and between the Paint Shop and the Trim Shop as noted earlier) allowed the downstream department to continue running for 15-20 minutes in the event of a mechanical breakdown or line stop in the previous department on the Fisher side so the entire system didn't grind to a halt every time there was a minor interruption. This was accomplished with accumulating power-and-free conveyor systems, which didn't change the sequence of bodies - it just held them in accumulator sections of the conveyor called "banks". The Chevrolet side also used overhead power-and-free conveyors which could accumulate carriers (in sequence) between the Trim, Chassis, and Final departments, although the accumulators were much smaller than those on the Fisher side and could only accommodate a 2-3 minute line stop before the whole system came to a halt.
Those are the "FACTS" - I was there, and that's the way it was, and it didn't change from 1967 to 1969. If YOU were there, feel free to correct me - I'm always open to learning.
Good. I have calculated roughly a 12 car average vin skip within the registry we have here for the focus segment of production we are discussing. More precicely there is a 16 vin skip between the early TT car and the early Vin# car- not that it matters.
Couple of questions:
Do you recall the following:
Number of staging lanes
Number of cars in each lane
average number of cars per lane
average number of cars in flux due to down line issues?
As A Manager I suspect you would have had access to the Stats... Thanks!
I think you meant SIX bolts.
So much back and forth. I'm confused know. So did the VIN's get scrambled and not come down the final Chevrolet line in sequential VIN order or not?
Thank you for taking the time to embellish on the banks.. I understand that more now and actually use a system like that here at work for scheduling truck repair ( all be it more primitive )... so thanks for that..
I wish it resolved the issue I have about spreading the cars across 6 or so lines with 70 cars (at busy times) and still locking them in by VIN sequence.. I just don't get that and I'm serious..I don't: Unless they were VIN'ed on the way OUT of that bank. I wish that could be explained.. I'm not talking about what I refer to as bump banks like at the end of a roller coaster waiting to get off.. I'm talking the split 6 or so rows..
It also cannot explain why so many tags where spray painted white.. certainly not for just one fellow to look at one single time..unless you would remeber them coming through to Chevy already white? Maybe after paint at Fisher the guys dressing the car at Fisher did it to trim the parts they needed?
The crux of this thread sort of depends on that resolution of VIN out the door in sequence debate. the kink in the armour is that all the pace cars are high optioned convertibles...plus the O-1 meant something... C-1 means Ermine
The entire week off in 03D is a mind bender as well
My issue is that when CRG members post anywhere they always do it with absolutes and end peoples opinion with words like fact.. I don't get that.. Its almost like you have to take a Type "A" personality test to be a member over there.. sorry man but thats the way it seems. I think the combative attitudes you see here and elsewhere are a direct result of ending every question with a Walter Kronkite kind of " Thats The Way It Is " attitude... If we all resign ourselves to really wanting to fine tune what we know about Camaros there needs to be some give and take.. I admit I'm wrong quite often. I'm not asking you to admit your wrong about anything in perticular but its obvious you never have.
Oh.. I forgot to ask:
Whats your take on this strike they had in 67' that I've read about in certain places and articles over the years? Did it stop production or just slow it down? Its mentioned often but never real specifics..
tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)
The body schedule bank had six lanes, and each lane (if full) could hold 12 bodies. In normal operation, the bank was about half-full, and only used five of the six lanes. The sixth lane was primarily for holding bodies for which an un-planned Chevrolet material shortage had developed, and was seldom used; it was empty most of the time.
The schedule bank wasn't there to serve as a cushion for downstream line stops in the Chevrolet assembly system (which were quite rare); it was there to keep the Chevrolet system running smoothly and continuously within the scheduling line-balance criteria, independent of the relatively random mix of bodies received from the Fisher side at any point in time.
Yes, they were in VIN order when released into the Chevrolet assembly system, unless the scheduling "rules" dictated that they be released differently due to option work content. In practice, it would be very unusual for a highly-optioned car to be more than 10-20 units out of VIN sequence, and non-option cars would almost always be in VIN sequence.
Sorry I am just not getting it, still confused.
That answer doesn't help me at all.
You say "YES they were", and then say "unless", followed by "very unusual to be more than 10-20 units out of VIN sequence." Is it just me or is that contradictory. How can they even be one position out of sequence and still be in sequence? They either were or they weren't.
The CRG has always been about intensive research and analysis, done by (volunteer) members who have spent fifteen years accumulating and analyzing data from many sources, and gaining consensus from all the members before publishing anything on our site, and we have always been open to input from others in the hobby to help develop the data.
We have members with experience (some up to 30-40 years' worth) in different areas of the Camaro history and hobby, and when you bring those different perspectives together on a particular issue, you can make sense out of issues that can be quite complex when viewed only from one perspective or set of experiences.
My particular area of expertise where I can contribute to the Group is in Manufacturing and Assembly, as that was my life for 38 years. I may (or may not) be the last guy still standing up straight and breathing who is active on the Internet with personal knowledge of the first-generation Camaro assembly process at both plants, and I want to share it with the hobby, so that's what I do. Others in CRG with talents, knowledge, and expertise in their particular area do the same thing, and we share the information openly with the hobby through our site, our forum, and participation in other Camaro forum discussions.
I don't have much information on Norwood strikes in 1967, but I do for 1968-1969; Norwood had an extremely militant and short-sighted local union with essentially incompetent leadership, and there were frequent strikes there, requiring frequent involvement of the International Union in Detroit applying pressure on the local union officials in order to get them back to work. That's why the plant was closed in 1992 and the new 4th-gen cars went to Ste. Therese instead of Norwood, putting 4500 people out of work who blindly followed lousy leadership.
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